Chances are, if you have planned a long-term trip with a partner before, you have also been subjected to the proclamations of “good luck” and “this will make or break your relationship!”. When you have invested lots of time, money and excitement into what you hope to be the trip of a lifetime, hearing these ‘words of wisdom’ don’t always have the best effect.
Not to worry. Here are some simple tips on traveling with your significant other, freeing more time for lovin’ and less time for stress and relationship breakdowns.
Do you prefer aisle or window seat? Who is going to sit next to the stranger on the long train commute? This may sound like a trivial subject now, but trust me, after 30 hours of zero sleep, and 5 trains to catch in one day, these little creature comforts can become life or death situations. And if you are both a window seat person? Time to compromise. Take turns people!
Try not to worry about getting lost, or an ATM eating your credit card (it happens!). I recently traveled through Europe with my partner and the first two weeks were some of the most exciting, but also the most stressful as we were finding our feet in new territory. Those printout folded maps they give you at the hotels? Not good enough. We went from a couple who rarely even bicker to almost biting each other’s heads off after walking around in circles because we were both too proud to ask for directions. The MAPS.ME offline GPS App saved us time, and probably our relationship at some points. And don’t forget, rooftop cocktails are a universal solution to most traveling problems.
Will you have a joint account? Have you both budgeted the same amount? Leaving it until you are over there can cause tension if one person expects to be fine dining every night, but the other can only afford burgers. To avoid unnecessary arguments over unrealistic expectations, lay out all finances before you leave and agree on a budget. What is your daily limit? What do you plan on ‘splurging’ on? Remember to compromise here, too. If you want to see a show at the Moulin Rouge, then you may have to suck it up and go on that Heineken Tour.
This is a once in a lifetime trip. You’ll want to remember it without a screen in front of your face. Keep the posts to a minimum if you can, or even delete apps if you think you can cope. I deleted Snapchat for our whole two months away, and it freed up so much more time to live ‘in the moment’.
Alone time is SO important, especially if you are spending months on end together. Even a simple daily meditation, nap, walk or tea on the balcony in the morning makes the world of difference and leaves your self-love cup overflowing, which in turn enables you to give more back to your partner.
Try and tee up crossing paths with people you know will be traveling at the same time. Some of the best memories of our trip were spent with people from home. And, it is nice to socialise with other people after a week of just the two of you.
It will happen naturally. Just relax.
Fancy dinners in Florence that turn into 2am deep conversations with strangers? Awesome. Spending that extra 100 euros on a sunset boat tour in Santorini? Totally worth living off gyros for the week. Try to go with the flow rather than planning your entire trip out – this is when the magic really happens.
What are your tips for traveling with a partner?
Words by Hollie Azzopardi
Hollie is a wellness coach, health writer, and speaker committed to inspiring people to live their healthiest, happiest and best lives – with a focus on achieving optimum wellbeing by aligning mind, body, and soul. She is particularly passionate about mental health and the key role this plays in ensuring a healthy and balanced lifestyle.